New Survey Shows Child Care Providers Love Their Jobs, But There are far too few Child Care Providers
Just released findings from the Mono County Child Care Needs Assessment show that Mono County in desperate need of child care providers.
Mono County, CA – May 15, 2017 – New research shows that child care is at a premium in Mono County. This is the situation: of 18 child care providers surveyed, providers reported between 2 and 27 families on their waitlist. One child care center reported a waiting list of 27 infants and 11 preschool children. The Walker/Colville area has no licensed child care providers for children 0-3 years, the Marine base only accepts the Marine’s children and others must rely on friends and family. These findings are part of new research released by the Mono County Child Care Council after interviews and surveys of 27 child care providers, 178 parents using or needing childcare, participants of First 5’s Peapod groups, and 32 employers.
Mono communities are doing well economically, but if people don’t have childcare, neither families nor employers can reap the benefits of a better economy.
“We are experiencing a lack of available, quality child care in every economic sector,” said Dyanna Hernandez, mother, and chair of the Mono County Child Care Council. “There are insufficient subsidized child care spots, and insufficient child care placements for those who are better off.” Parent surveys indicated that 85% needed child care to be able to work and support their families. While 70% of employers reported they were flexible in scheduling to accommodate child care needs, employers also reported that doing so creates stress and difficulty for the business.
In the employers’ eyes, the top contributors to child care problems were lack of reliable child care, no alternative child care in emergencies, limited care for alternative work hours, and inability to afford child care. In both consumer surveys and interviews, the top 3 problems cited were inability to obtain child care are Cost (43%), none available (30%) and lack of child care for infants and toddlers (22%). Another frequently stated problem was lack of care on odd hours and weekends.
Child care is definitely not without its rewards. Providers say that working with children can offer a great opportunity for persons who love children, want to work out of their homes or want to stay home with their own children. Child care providers report great satisfaction from watching the children learn and reach developmental milestones, gaining the love and trust of the children, and witnessing them build relationships with each other.
“The chronic child care problem has become acutely worse in spite of an increased need,” reflected Mono County Health Officer, First 5 Commissioner and pediatrician, Richard Johnson. “All partners need to come together and produce solutions.” Meanwhile, Cerro Coso Community College has a great online program with many open Summer classes in Child Health/Development that begin in June. The Mono County Office of Education is working with partners to develop a child care center, but for right now, parents have few options. Persons interested in pursuing a business in child care may call Queenie Barnard at Inyo Mono Advocates for Community Action (IMACA) at 760-934-3343.